COVID-19 Member-Only Information

COVID-19 Resources for UST Members

UST is committed to supporting your organization during this unprecedented crisis. For UST Trust members, this page provides important information about the management of your account, UST strategies for protecting your assets, and measures in place to support your organization should you need to conduct layoffs in response to public health restrictions. If you do not find the information you are looking for, please contact your Account Specialist at 1-888-249-4788.

We know every organization’s situation is unique. If you can spare five minutes, please take our short one-page survey to tell us how your organization has been impacted. This information will be valuable in helping us anticipate the magnitude of claims activity we are likely to see in the coming months. 

TAKE ACTION: Congress just passed sweeping legislation aimed at addressing unemployment compensation for those affected by COVID-19. Current legislation includes 50% relief for reimbursing employers. Tell Congress, and also get the message to your State leadership, that it is vital to treat ALL employers equally with regard to these pandemic claims by providing 100% subsidy of these payments and not to discriminate against these mission based employers because they elected a special financing option specifically designed for them by the Federal Government. Click here to contact your elected officials today!

Below are some of the trending COVID-19 resources for nonprofit employers:

To ask a question of one of our dedicated HR experts, please contact ThinkHR directly here.

You can also view some of our top UST Member FAQs in the section below.

COVID-19 UST Member FAQs

 

Search our Frequently Asked Questions:

What happens if we lay people off and there isn’t enough money in our account? Will you continue to pay claims? (Trust Program Only)

UST will allow members to carry a deficit reserve balance. Members’ contributions will be adjusted in the following year to pay back the deficit over time. For more information on our deficit account guidelines, please reference page 22 of our UST Admin Manual.

How will this impact our balance and future contributions? (Trust Program Only)

An increase in claims which results in a significant decrease in your reserve balance will result in increased contributions in the following year(s).

Do you offer Stop Loss? Is it capped? (Trust Program Only)

Yes. For more information on our stop loss policy, please reference page 21 and 22 of our UST Admin Manual.

With the recent volatility of the market, how has this impacted our investments? (Trust Program Only)

UST’s asset management policy is informed by the long-term needs of its members. It is important to remember that your participation in UST is not intended to be an investment vehicle. Rather, the reserve balances are invested in order to generate income that will offset the cost of participation over the long run. To that end, the portfolio is built to satisfy multiple objectives. The primary goal of reducing the long-term cost of participating in the Trust requires assets in the portfolio to grow. To that end, the portfolio maintains an allocation to stocks. These equity securities face the greatest amount of declines in periods like the past month but provide the best returns over the long-run.

The other primary objective of the portfolio is capital preservation and stability. Because unemployment claims tend to spike at the very same time equity markets are declining, the portfolio maintains an allocation to fixed income securities which offer lower long-term returns but tend to experience less volatility.

The investment policy statement developed by our advisors and approved by the Trustees included a process for establishing these asset allocation targets based on scenario analysis and stress tests that simulated market environments like the one we are now facing.

Coming into 2020, the Trust’s portfolio was in a position of strength. Assets were at an all-time high following a superb market environment in 2019. Over the past few weeks, almost every asset class, equities and fixed income alike, experienced some level of decline. The good news is that the portfolio’s U.S. government investments have performed as expected and generated positive returns year-to-date. This has provided a strong ballast against the volatility of the stock market.

In closing, it is important to remember bear markets are stressful, but they always end. While we cannot predict when conditions will improve, we believe patience and a disciplined approach to investing is essential to delivering the best possible results.

 If you have additional questions about the investment portfolio, please contact us.

Is there a simplified way to respond to all these claims?

Yes, our claims administrator has created a spreadsheet to easily respond to all claims related to this health crisis. Please click here for the template. Once complete, please email directly to your dedicated claims representative.

As an alternative to sending a file and designed specifically for lack of work cases such as "Lack of Work Due to National Tragedy", the "Quick Reply" feature allows CaseBuilder users to by-pass the "Claim Detail" screen to quickly provide basic details for lack of work cases. For more information, please  click here.

Another alternative to sending a file, the “Upload Multiple Separations” option will allow you to respond to multiple separations quickly.  Please reference the guide here.

Are there outplacement resources we can offer to our employees during this time?

Yes, as a UST member you have access to CareerArc, our outplacement and career transition partner. UST offers two different packages – silver and gold. The silver package is included at no additional charge. Please click here for additional information. 

If you choose to offer this benefit, individuals will have access to career coaches for 6 months to assist with resume and cover letter revisions, networking, interviewing exercises, etc. The goal is to help these individuals secure employment more quickly thus reducing your unemployment exposure.

To sign up your employees, you can download the employee sign-up sheet here.

How do we return to the state tax system?

Most states allow for changes in funding methods once a year, typically with a December 1st deadline.  In these instances, the soonest you would be able to return to the tax paying method would be January 1, 2021. 

There are other implications to be considered when making these changes, so please contact us to discuss further.